Policeman's 26-year service recognised with promotion
After a 26-year career in the Police force, that included taking a bullet in the line of duty, Nanai Vani Va, added to a storied career by being promoted to Senior Sergeant.
Nanai was sworn in as a Police officer in 1994.
In a career spanning several years, he has served in units across the Ministry including the Criminal Investigation Division and the Tactical Operation Squad.
Nanai is the son of Lupematasila Nanai Anae and Tumamā of Falelatai and is married to a local journalist and baker, Lupesāomalo Maina. They have five children.
“We face unique challenges in the line of duty that threaten our health and well-being,” said Nanai who was shot in 2007 in Faleatiu.
“It’s one of the things I will never forget when I was shot during an operation in Falelatai during the Festive season.
“A near-death experience makes you reevaluate your perspective on a lot of things and especially your career but, I am passionate about my job.”
Nanai also served in the Solomon Islands for two years.
He is a certified defensive driving instructor endorsed by the Australian Federal Police and also has a certificate after completing a Junior Management Course in Law Enforcement in China.
Nanai is also certified to perform duties as close personal protection in the Ministry.
“What makes the job challenging is the different people we have to deal with on any given basis,” he said in response to questions from the Samoa Observer.
“Sometimes you are dealing with people that are on drugs, have mental problems, and might also be carrying weapons that are dangerous.
“Being a Police officer is a calling; one must have the passion to be a cop.”
Nanai acknowledged the leadership of the Commissioner Fuiavaili Egon Keil for the reforms he has ushered in during the most recent stage of his career.
“We have seen a lot of changes under his leadership, aside from the Police Officers taking a step up in their line of work through promotions we waited for years to get, but also [affording us] the opportunity for us to receive proper training to better our skills in the line of duty,” Nanai said.
“The constant words of encouragement day in and day out, continues to ignite the passion to carry out our duty, is something worth recognising.
“A lot has been done and changed under his leadership.
"Thank you Fuiaviali’ili for not shying away from making the hard decisions in the Ministry and seeing through officers uphold their oath sworn to protect our country, Government and our people.”
Nanai concluded by acknowledging his wife and children for their continued support over the years: "I couldn't have done it without their support.”